David Pratt Demarest: ‘Libertarian Fund-Raising At Its Best’

David Pratt Demarest via LNC list:

Hi Sean (O’Toole),

You and Cissy (Spraggins) hosted a great fund-raiser event Friday night before the Kansas City LNC meeting this past weekend. All that I talked to afterwards were enthusiastic about holding similar fund-raiser events before all LNC meetings going forward.

Libertarian institutions have limited budgets and cannot act as cash cows to fund every request. What they can afford to do is to provide small symbolic seed contributions to encourage grassroots, bottom-up fundraising. The bulk of project financial requirements should be covered by our acceptance of fund-raising as a bottom-up obligation instead of abdicating our financial responsibilities to top-down Libertarian institutions. As emphasized repeatedly by Bill Redpath and others during our Kansas City LNC meeting, if you give a man a fish, it will feed him for a day. If you teach him to fish it will feed him for a lifetime. Bottom-up fund-raising training is critical to the future of the LP.

Every Libertarian event is an opportunity for fund-raising. This includes Libertarian gatherings down to the level of sub-committee meetings. If nothing more, a labeled contribution “jar” can be passed around or available at the door for donations.

Libertarians hate to ask. However, once they decide to take the bull by the horns, they do a bang-up job on fund-raising as evidenced by the Friday night event. All Libertarians will benefit from learning that it is okay to ask at every opportunity. Lauren Daugherty and team are doing a marvelous job of demonstrating to LNC members that it is okay to ask.

Sean, here is what I noted from the fund-raiser hosted by you and Cissy:

1. At every Libertarian event, ask and you will receive.

2. As noted by several LNC members, the Friday night event got the LNC meeting off to a great start and led to an unexpectedly cordial and productive meeting. It was a lot of fun!

3. Have a host for every fund-raising event. Spread the hosting responsibility around so that all have an opportunity to learn the ropes of hosting and facilitating fruitful fund-raising events.

4. Seek a matching-fund donor or group of donors for every fund-raising event. Thank to Joel Trammell for his generosity that started the ball rolling Friday night!

5. Use the Larry Sharpe matching bid auction fund-raising method preceded by training on the simple but super-effective method that Larry continues to inspire us with. Nick did a marvelous job using the Larry Sharpe method to bring the fund-raiser to a successful and inspirational conclusion that totaled nearly $70,000. I hope that Larry will provide a brief manual on his fund-raising techniques for our training going forward. It is not rocket science. However, Larry has demonstrated several specific techniques that have proven to be fruitful that we all can learn from. I believe that Michael Pickens’ Libertarian Leadership Academy provides fund-raising training as part of their Libertarian leadership curriculum.

6. Libertarian institutions are particularly good at inspiring and empowering individuals to go out and do the heavy lifting for the LP, including fund-raising projects. I propose that the LNC set an example for all Libertarian institutions by providing or arranging for other to provide fund-raising training, both internally and at all conventions, conferences and festivals. Fund-raising 101 will be necessary and critical key to success to beat the duopoly at their own game!

7. The relevance and necessity of fund-raising for candidates is obvious. Libertarian institutional support for candidates will be greatly enhanced by adding a strong fund-raising component to their candidate recruitment and training programs. Fund-raising best practices training will be a hallmark of the forthcoming Roads to Freedom Foundation.

Sean, kudos to you and Cissy, Lauren and team, Joel Trammel, and all LNC members and friends for an inspirational fund-raising event that set the stage for a productive LNC meeting. More importantly, the successful fund-raiser provided a great example of what Libertarians can achieve in the fund-raising arena when we use our imagination. Such creativity will be necessary going forward to out-compete the duopoly in every facet of political activity, including fund-raising.


~David Pratt

2018 Omaha Roads to Freedom Un-Convention

Freedom, Nothing More, Nothing Less

~David Pratt Demarest

Roads to Freedom Foundation, Founder

LNC Region 6 Representative (IA, IL, MN, MO, ND, NE, WI)

LSLA Vice-Chair

LPNE State Central Committee, Secretary

LPRC Board Member, Nebraska State Coordinator

David.Demarest at LP.org

Secretary at LPNE.org

DPDemarest at centurylink.net

DPrattDemarest at gmail.com

Cell: 402-981-6469

Home: 402-493-0873

2 thoughts on “David Pratt Demarest: ‘Libertarian Fund-Raising At Its Best’

  1. Pingback: LNC 2017: Summary of last weekend’s meeting in Kansas City | Independent Political Report

  2. BetteRose Ryan

    You are right that we have to learn to ask. A good libertarian friend of mine, Joe Johnson, has said,”The answer is always ‘no’ until you ask.” He won his city council seat by asking people to make him their second choice. He even went to doors that had other people’s campaign signs in their yards and asked them. The result was, he not only won a seat, he was the top vote getter but he needed to ask!

    All we have to do is ask politely with a reason to ask. When I became fundraiser in Colorado the state had less money in the bank then one of our affiliates – less than $500. All it took was actively asking through the mail and at our state convention to raise thousands. The only thing you need is good attendance at en event, a reason for people to give, and to ask.

    Another libertarian friend, Doug Anderson, (also a councilman) said, “Of Ready, Aim,Fire the one thing you don’t want to miss is Fire. For fundraising, it is Ask.

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